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  1. #1
    Administrator highlander's Avatar
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    Default INFP and ENFJ Relationships

    What do you think about relationships between INFPs and ENFJs? The focus of this is really on romantic relationships but it also makes sense to discuss your experience in situations where these two types interact in a significant way – such as friendship, at work, etc.

    When it’s working – What are the joys and positive aspects of these relationships?
    - How compatible do you think these two types are in general?
    - Why are they attracted to each other?
    - How to they compliment each other?
    - How well do they understand each other and why?
    - What are they like together raising children?

    When it’s not working – What are the challenges when two people of this type are in a relationship?
    - What are some of the communication challenges they can have?
    - What are the biggest frustrations between these two types?
    - How can they take each other for granted?
    - What happens with things “go wrong” between these two types?

    Advice for couples – What recommendations do you have?
    - What things should each type do to facilitate better communication?
    - What advice do you have for each of the two types?
    - If you are an INFP, what advice do you have for the ENFJs?
    - If you are an ENFJ, what advice would you have for the INFPs?

    Please provide feedback on my Nohari and Johari Window by clicking here: Nohari/Johari

    Tri-type 639

  2. #2
    I could do things Hard's Avatar
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    Never really been in a relationship so I can't offer information in that context. That said, one of my best friends (and person who I've been friends with for the longest), is an INFP 6w7. We became fast friends when we were 8.

    I generally don't mix well with INFP's though. The thing is I can tick Fi off a lot. Sometimes simply my mere exsistance is not ok to Fi doms. Sometimes I see them as far too selfish/spineless and I have a very hard time putting up with that.

    With my INFP friend though, we just have great synergy with each other despite being so different in many ways. What helps is we have a lot of common interests, our values are very similar almost across the board, and both have described this "feeling" that we get in each others presence. We both feel "safe" to be more of our core selves which is something we both strive for, but for very different reasons. It's very important for my friend to be genuine and not cover himself and act out a part. Being with me he knows that isn't required, and I'd actually frown upon it if he did. He knows that I instinctively know how important it is for him, and I foster that. For me it's important because I am constantly covering myself and altering my presentation. I need to be able to cut loose and drop the masks for a while. He knows this and makes me stop when he sees me doing it.

    One thing that I think helps a lot is he's a 6w7 (he's switches from phobic to counterphobic, but leans to the latter). It makes a gruffness to him that I sort of need since if he's too soft I'll push too hard and upset his sensibilites. He'll push back if I cross something (which is very, very rare).

    One thing he appreciates in me is my authenticity. Which is sort of strange to think about because I don't concern myself with it at all. I am simply me, I do my thing, and there are large parts of myself that I am unapologetic about. For as much as I put on masks and dress myself up, act polite, cordial, etc., there are other parts that can't be hidden, or that I don't care to. I'm odd, have odd interests, and if I am pushed, scolded, or gain some sort of reaction for it, I sort of just go "...eh? I'm supposed to care?". He sees the fact that I so freely and naturally traverse all this as a wonderful quality. He also strongly strongly values how moralistic and deterministic I am, and the solid spine I have with it. It's a quality he has, but he is unable to output it. He also generally really likes how odd I am. In his words "It never gets old, it's really entertaining, and I always see something new emerge". I'm an unsolveable puzzle to him in some respects.

    At first what I valued out of him so much is he saw passed my social failures and unacceptable oddities, and saw the good in me for who I was. He didn't let those irritations get in the way. Further, when they did come up, he'd actually point them out in a gruff, but caring manner. He never dropped me as a friend after all these years. Now, I value him for how much fun we have with each other. Things just flow. Always have, always will. It's very rare for either of us to have that with another person at the purity we do. For reasons I can't explain, I just don't feel the need to filter or twist myself around him. I do so with everyone, and out of all of them, I do so the least with him. Further, he responds to it. Almost every time too.
    MBTI: ExxJ tetramer
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  3. #3
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    I find them terribly charming at first, particularly the e3 variety, which seems the most common. The e4 is pretty appealing to, as they are a fellow 4 but a rather different type of 4.

    They seem to embody my ideal partner, or in other words, if you typed my ideal then ENFJ might seem the best fit.

    However, the Socionics relationship weirdly plays out here (for FeNi and FiNe). They are great for friends, but it never goes deep enough. I have this wonderful sense of them being like me but flipped inside out; but perhaps it's lacking the mystery of a more foreign type and the comforts of a more similar type. Still, it holds so much promise, I have not written it off as a possibility.

    I dont think I need to really explain the promise which exists within this match. Both have a preference for feeling augmented by intuition, but they apply it differently, which can be very complementary. The ENFJ tends to have a greater grasp of interpersonal, social dynamics and the INFP of intrapersonal matters and more intimate interpersonal dynamics. Both may find the other insightful and impressive in their areas of strengths.
    The J/P differences can seem especially complementary here....many ENFJs romanticize spontaneity, and INFPs are great at that; INFPs may appreciate some non-pushy help in being more organized and social. ENFJs can meet many social ideals, which INFPs are not immune to, and INFPs can be admirable to ENFJs with their courageous individuality.
    With shared values, interets, beliefs, etc, there appears a huge potential for a happy pairing. Theoretically, it's great on paper...so why may it never take off or why may it fail?

    When it’s not working – What are the challenges when two people of this type are in a relationship?
    - What are some of the communication challenges they can have?
    ENFJs can seem bossy at times. The typical response to this from an IxxP is to ignore it and do what you want anyway. That may infuriate the ENFJ. The ENFJ may resort to manipulation tactics, which will be seen through by an INFP and disregarded. When people don't respond to their tactics, I notice that NFJs will think "I've put all this effort in and they're not responding, so I'm writing them off!". To an INFP, this looks like crappy communication. The sensitivity of the INFP can make it hard for others to find the middle ground between being read as bossy or manipulative. You have to be truly diplomatic and allow the INFP freedom of choice, including freedom to act authentically and not in response to coercion. Since ENFJs may prefer to make a decision and get closure ASAP, it may seem to the INFP that their freedom is being squashed. When manipulation comes into play, the INFP's response may seem like they are just being difficult and refusing to give someone what they want when that someone has been nice about it. The INFP feels like there's a silly game going on and may want to call out the elephant in the room. This is when we, INFPs, may become very "raw" in our communication (probably most applicable to a subtype such as my own). This can seem harsh, mean, difficult, and rude to the ENFJ (how FJs often see me when I'm not responding to their attempts to manipulate). If not directed at them, they will likely find it amusing though.

    For typically appearing personable and warm, ENFJs can actually be hard to get to know on a deeper level. Many will work hard to get to know you and make you feel special, but you can get a sense of them holding back. Sometimes I'm not sure the deeper part exists because they may seem to want to keep things on the surface, such as banter and discussion of wider social issues. This is where things can seem to come to a halt with the two types, IMO.

    - What are the biggest frustrations between these two types?
    Can't speak for ENFJs, but one of my biggest frustrations with them is that they can make the INFP feel quite special, but then it's discovered that they do this with everyone. In short, they may not seem genuine enough for an INFP, who may also want more emotional exclusivity. Other frustrations can be related more to the e3 subtype who can seem a bit shallow and deceptive in their image.

    I also get frustrated with what I call a "yo-yo effect". The ENFJ pursues the reserved, withdrawn INFP until they respond, but when they finally respond and open up, then the ENFJ seems to lose interest and puts the INFP on the back burner while they move onto others. Then if the INFP cools off towards them while on the back burner, they may suddenly regain interest and try to warm up the INFP or "pull them back in" again. An INFP will be weary of this, as the vulnerability of opening up is no small thing to them. This also seems to prevent the relationship from deepening.

    - How can they take each other for granted?
    Usual mistake of assuming another NF will just "get it" instead of communicating clearly.
    The INFP may think there is something deeper than there is or potential for it, via a misinterpretation of the ENFJ's demeanor as being special towards them. The ENFJ may think the quiet, flexible INFP can be, wants to be, or needs to be directed.

    - What happens with things “go wrong” between these two types?
    I've never had any blowup with one. Usually things just fade out and regress back to friendly acquaintances.
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe
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  4. #4
    Honeyed Water thoughtlost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeAppled View Post
    I find them terribly charming at first, particularly the e3 variety, which seems the most common. The e4 is pretty appealing to, as they are a fellow 4 but a rather different type of 4.

    They seem to embody my ideal partner, or in other words, if you typed my ideal then ENFJ might seem the best fit.

    However, the Socionics relationship weirdly plays out here (for FeNi and FiNe). They are great for friends, but it never goes deep enough. I have this wonderful sense of them being like me but flipped inside out; but perhaps it's lacking the mystery of a more foreign type and the comforts of a more similar type. Still, it holds so much promise, I have not written it off as a possibility.

    I dont think I need to really explain the promise which exists within this match. Both have a preference for feeling augmented by intuition, but they apply it differently, which can be very complementary. The ENFJ tends to have a greater grasp of interpersonal, social dynamics and the INFP of intrapersonal matters and more intimate interpersonal dynamics. Both may find the other insightful and impressive in their areas of strengths.
    The J/P differences can seem especially complementary here....many ENFJs romanticize spontaneity, and INFPs are great at that; INFPs may appreciate some non-pushy help in being more organized and social. ENFJs can meet many social ideals, which INFPs are not immune to, and INFPs can be admirable to ENFJs with their courageous individuality.
    With shared values, interets, beliefs, etc, there appears a huge potential for a happy pairing. Theoretically, it's great on paper...so why may it never take off or why may it fail?

    When it’s not working – What are the challenges when two people of this type are in a relationship?
    - What are some of the communication challenges they can have?
    ENFJs can seem bossy at times. The typical response to this from an IxxP is to ignore it and do what you want anyway. That may infuriate the ENFJ. The ENFJ may resort to manipulation tactics, which will be seen through by an INFP and disregarded. When people don't respond to their tactics, I notice that NFJs will think "I've put all this effort in and they're not responding, so I'm writing them off!". To an INFP, this looks like crappy communication. The sensitivity of the INFP can make it hard for others to find the middle ground between being read as bossy or manipulative. You have to be truly diplomatic and allow the INFP freedom of choice, including freedom to act authentically and not in response to coercion. Since ENFJs may prefer to make a decision and get closure ASAP, it may seem to the INFP that their freedom is being squashed. When manipulation comes into play, the INFP's response may seem like they are just being difficult and refusing to give someone what they want when that someone has been nice about it. The INFP feels like there's a silly game going on and may want to call out the elephant in the room. This is when we, INFPs, may become very "raw" in our communication (probably most applicable to a subtype such as my own). This can seem harsh, mean, difficult, and rude to the ENFJ (how FJs often see me when I'm not responding to their attempts to manipulate). If not directed at them, they will likely find it amusing though.

    For typically appearing personable and warm, ENFJs can actually be hard to get to know on a deeper level. Many will work hard to get to know you and make you feel special, but you can get a sense of them holding back. Sometimes I'm not sure the deeper part exists because they may seem to want to keep things on the surface, such as banter and discussion of wider social issues. This is where things can seem to come to a halt with the two types, IMO.

    - What are the biggest frustrations between these two types?
    Can't speak for ENFJs, but one of my biggest frustrations with them is that they can make the INFP feel quite special, but then it's discovered that they do this with everyone. In short, they may not seem genuine enough for an INFP, who may also want more emotional exclusivity. Other frustrations can be related more to the e3 subtype who can seem a bit shallow and deceptive in their image.

    I also get frustrated with what I call a "yo-yo effect". The ENFJ pursues the reserved, withdrawn INFP until they respond, but when they finally respond and open up, then the ENFJ seems to lose interest and puts the INFP on the back burner while they move onto others. Then if the INFP cools off towards them while on the back burner, they may suddenly regain interest and try to warm up the INFP or "pull them back in" again. An INFP will be weary of this, as the vulnerability of opening up is no small thing to them. This also seems to prevent the relationship from deepening.

    - How can they take each other for granted?
    Usual mistake of assuming another NF will just "get it" instead of communicating clearly.
    The INFP may think there is something deeper than there is or potential for it, via a misinterpretation of the ENFJ's demeanor as being special towards them. The ENFJ may think the quiet, flexible INFP can be, wants to be, or needs to be directed.

    - What happens with things “go wrong” between these two types?
    I've never had any blowup with one. Usually things just fade out and regress back to friendly acquaintances.
    I am sure some of those ENFJs must be type 2 (but correct me if I am wrong, though). I have been in a similar dance with my friend, especially the "yo-yo effect" dance. She is a type 2 (but I am really unsure of what type of extrovert she is ...and it makes it even more confusing because she believes she is an introvert ...she believes she owns "people repellent" ).

    Anyway, if she is ENFJ ... then she is also just slow to trust and for that reason the relationships she builds seem shallow in the sense that EVERYONE feels special around her. You just got to get past the "feel good" stage and see them for who they are (and not how they make you feel/open up/feel like there could be something more ....FOR YOU) and force her to be real with you, in a way. But you have to do it from her perspective (so you do have to assume good intentions even if you see the not so desirable consequences of her behavior/thoughts/actions for you). This is what I am trying to do at least; it's not easy, but I hope to get better.

    You, OA, probably already know/don't care about all that I am telling you, but it helps me to think about my relationship to type this up this way
    You are so arbitrary.

  5. #5
    fragment Lia_kat's Avatar
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    This is an old thread but I feel the need to give my input since I've been with an ENFJ 2w1 for almost nine years.
    When we first dating I saw the charm and magnetism he had right away, especially in a group setting. I was the quiet and withdrawn one but he still made me feel special because the way he interacted / talked to other people was miles apart from how he was with me. It's almost like he had another face with me (this has not changed). He was more open and deep with me. He liked my individuality, my passion, my quirkiness, frankness, and that I was different from all the other women he had been with. He liked that he could be honest with me more so than other people. We built our relationship on communication and sense of humor. Very deep friendship.

    I agree with @OrangeAppled about ENFJ being bossy and INFP just ignoring it. I do this often with him. He gets frustated because he says he "knows what's best for me". He can get fatherly and preachy in the way he talks to me and gives advice, which can get annoying. Everything he does/says is with good intentions though. He is extremely kind. I can be hard to deal with because I'm extremely stubborn and do things my way. He has been incredibly patient and accepting of my flaws. He is a brilliant renaissance man and has taught me so much that I have become a better person as a result.

    The only time we really have issues if when we are arguing and I feel he is being too logical and condescending instead of understanding my feelings. I withdraw a lot because the emotion is too intense and he sees it as me ignoring him or running away from the situation instead of "dealing with it" now.

    I'll come back and edit this post if I think of anything else.
    "..But my dreaming self refuses to be consoled."- M.Atwood
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